I remember my third grade teacher, Mrs. Davis, as a kindly elderly woman in her 30’s who really cared for us urchins from the regions of the unacceptable. Her emphasis on learning how to communicate has stuck by me for the 63 years since I was one of her worst students.
Her phrase during declamation time was, “Now once more with emphasis.” She meant that she wanted whoever was quoting or reading to put feeling into the piece. I have listened to myriads of speakers who never knew anyone just like Mrs. Davis. One slam against me is, “Why, that Lilly has the ability to put tremendous passion into the emptiest words.” Comes from a mostly empty head, but a full heart I suppose. Here’s The Pilgrims Progress author on the subject:
“In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words with out a heart.”
Bunyan had the power while writing from the Bedford Jail, being in such a place due to his refusal to accept a license from the state church, to set words on fire. He never tinkered with the language, he merely turned words into powerful tools used of the Lord to fire up the spirit of millions of readers.
Whether praying, singing or speaking, we should put some feeling in.
Ephesians 6:6, “Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;”
Copyright © 2013 Larry Lilly
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